My wife and I play games with our four-and-a-half year old daughter several times a week to counteract the hyper stimulation of her TV, iPad, Droid, Wii activities. Games undoubtedly develop many skills such as colour identification, counting, solving simple mazes and, storyline appreciation. Social skills are learned simultaneously, like taking turns, patience, and sportsmanship. Parents enjoy educational & nostalgic “family time”. Michael Plociniak
It is a time when my husband, son birutoto and I can get close together and fully focus on each other and laugh. We tend to enjoy strategy games that make us think and the games that make us laugh out loud. I have always loved games and often played them with my girls when they were young and still do today (they are 25 & 27 now). These times were always “our” time and I can see this must of been some influence on them because they too have many games and bring them to all our family gatherings. Michele McKay
For my kids, I think games teach a number of things as they progress from simple games to more complex ones. Taking turns, understanding how to move along a board, counting pips on the die or spaces on the board are all basic skills. But I think once you get past simple roll-and-move games and there’s an element of choice, then they start to learn how to make decisions, how to plan ahead. They begin to understand that their choices have consequences, and that winning a game requires thinking about those choices.
I recently played a simple dice game with my second-grade daughter, and an unexpected bonus was that she was working on her addition during the game—I had her keep her own score, and she’s just been learning how to add two- and three-digit numbers, so it was great practice for her while getting to play a game with dad. Jonathan Liu